Difference Between Consensus And Affective Conflict

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Cognitive conflict and Affective conflict
Allen C. Amason (1996) distinguishes between two different kinds of conflicts, i.e. cognitive conflict and affective conflict. His study examines the paradoxical effects of conflicts on strategic decision making. Top management teams make strategic decisions by combining their diverse cognitive capabilities with some sort of interaction process. According to him “decision quality, consensus, and affective acceptance are by-products of those decisions and together are all equally necessary for sustainable high organizational performance. Conflict appears to be important for high-quality decisions. Yet, conflict also appears to be an impediment to consensus and affective acceptance” (Amason, 1996). Further, he describes conflict as multidimensional, one dimension of conflict enhances decision quality while another dimension attenuates consensus and affective acceptance. When conflict is functional, it is generally task oriented and focused on different opinions about how best to achieve common objectives (Amason, 1996).

Cognitive conflict can broadly be defined as a psychological state involving a discrepancy between cognitive structures and experience, or between various cognitive structures, i.e. mental representations that organize knowledge, beliefs, values, motives, and needs. This discrepancy occurs when simultaneously active, mutually incompatible representations compete for a single response ( Waxer & Morton, 2012). Due to
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